Monday, August 29, 2016

Curried Okra With Coconut Milk

Curried okra with coconut milk
Okra curry with coconut milk
And August comes to an end. Well, almost! It's been a month of hospitals, medication and also my physiotherapy for my painful right knee. I'm already feeling a little better and hoping that it doesn't take too long for me to get back to regular activities around the house.
Today's dish reminded me of the use of coconuts in our house. They were usually in the form of sweets as in laddoos, pithas and steamed rice dumplings. It was only much later after I had taken an interest on cooking that coconuts were added to savoury dishes as well. Although I love coconut milk, my husband and sons aren't really fond of it. Which is why it isn't an everyday kind of thing in my kitchen. On occasions when I do add coconut milk to dishes I end up with a second helping of rice!:)
With okra also they are more favoured in dry(ish) preparations rather than curried. One curry/khari is the dish with fermented fish and rice flour. But they are usually fried, stuffed and fried, steamed or added to dal.

Ingredients: (This serves 4)
250 grams okra
2 medium onions, peeled and thinly sliced
A dash of ginger paste
A dash of garlic paste
1 tsp coriander powder (toasted and ground)
1 quarter tsp cumin powder (toasted and ground)
1 large tomato, blanched, peeled and chopped up
A dash of turmeric powder
Salt to taste
1 tsp red chilli powder
2 star anise
Vegetable oil, as needed
A bit of cumin seeds
2 sprigs curry leaves
1 cup coconut milk
The milk I used was from 1 coconut with the milk squeezed out just once by adding a bit of warm water.
Method:
Wash and dry the vegetable with the help of a dish cloth.
Remove ends and cut them into 11/2" lengths. I cut them on the diagonal.
Add a touch of salt and turmeric powder and mix well. Set aside.
Heat some oil in a kadhai. Shallow fry the okra. You could do this in 2-3 batches.
Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a plate lined with kitchen paper.

In the same oil, throw in the star anise. Add the onions and fry till they turn pale. Add the ginger and garlic pastes.
Add the rest of the spices and the tomato.
Season with salt and continue to cook till the mixture looks done. This will take about 8-10 minutes.
Add the shallow fried vegetable and give it a gentle stir.
Add the coconut milk and keep it on medium flame till the okra is done. This will take another 5 minutes.
Transfer to a serving dish.
In a small pan heat about a teaspoon of oil. As soon as it is hot, throw in the cumin seeds and the curry leaves. Pour this mixture on top of the curried okra. You could use mustard seeds in place of cumin seeds.
Now get that plate of rice..... 

Other okra posts:
Bharwan Bhindi/Stuffed Okra
Bendakaya Gojju/South Indian Okra Dish
Dal Cooked With Okra/ Dal Jang Bhendi
Okra With Eggs/Bhendi Yaoyaba Daodi Jang
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